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Mon, Apr 09, 2007

First Finnish-Built NH90 Helo Takes Flight

One Of 18 Helos Ordered By Swedish Gov't

Aero-News has learned the first high-cabin NH90 transport helicopter destined for the Swedish Defense Forces, and assembled by Patria in Finland, has successfully flown its first test flights. This helicopter is the third Swedish NH90 to take off after the two others have been test-flown and assembled by Eurocopter in Marignane, France. Of the 18 NH90s ordered by the government of Sweden, 14 are to be assembled in Finland.

The average duration of the test flights was 90 minutes. Representatives with Eurocopter state this important milestone of the NH90 program demonstrates the capacity of all industrial partners involved in this program to achieve a sustained and regular ramping up pace.

Patria has already assembled the standard NH90 transport version for the Finnish Defence Forces, which test flights have also fulfilled all expectations. Patria is responsible for assembling most of the Nordic NH90 ordered by Sweden, and Finland.

Patria’s teams have been working very closely for the past three years with Eurocopter and its partners to acquire the requested knowledge and skills to assemble and maintain the NH90.

The Finnish assembly line is the fourth operational line assembling the NH90, beside the ones based in France, Germany and Italy. A fifth assembly line, based in Australia, will start producing the Australian NH90, called MRH90, later this year.

Patria is a defense and aerospace group with international operations delivering its customers competitive solutions based on own specialist know-how and partnerships. Patria is owned by the State of Finland and the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company EADS N.V.

FMI: www.patria.fi, www.eurocopter.com, www.mil.fi/english/

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